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-   -   2 week review of my Black Gold Longhorn (http://www.ramforumz.com/showthread.php?t=141734)

Explorer Rob 05-09-2013 01:10 AM

2 week review of my Black Gold Longhorn
 
Here is my review of my 2013 Ram Laramie Longhorn 4x4. In addition to the standard Longhorn features like 20-Inch x 9-Inch Alum Polished/Gold Inserts Wheels, 32-Gallon Fuel Tank, 506-Watt Alpine® Surround w/9 Spkrs & Subwoofer, 7 Pin Wiring Harness, Accent Color Running Boards, Accent Fender Flares, Air Conditioning ATC with Dual Zone Control, Auto-Dimming Exterior Mirrors, Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror, Automatic Headlamps, Bi-Function Projector Chrome Headlamps, Dual Rear Exhaust with Bright Tips, Electronic Vehicle Information Center, Exterior Mirrors with Heating Element, Fog Lamps, Full-Size Spare Tire, HD Radio, Heated Front Seats, Heated Second-Row Seats, Heated Steering Wheel, LED Interior Lighting, Locking Lug Nuts, Locking Tailgate, Longhorn Interior Accents, Lower Two Tone Paint, Luxury Front and Rear Floor Mats, Memory for Radio, Driver's Seat, Mirrors and Pedals, Overhead Console with Garage Door Opener, Painted Front Bumper, Painted Rear Bumper, ParkSense® Rear Park Assist System, ParkView® Rear Back Up Camera,
Power Accessory Delay, Power Adjustable Pedals with Memory, Power Chrome Multi-Function Mirrors Power Fold-Away, Power Front Windows w/ 1-Touch Up and Down Feature, Premium Door Trim Panel
Premium Filigree Leather Seats, Premium Leather-Wrapped Steering Wheel, Premium Tail Lamps, Pwr 10-Way Driver Seat w/Memory&Pwr 6-Way Pass Seat, Rear Power Sliding Window, Rear Under Seat Storage Compartment, Remote Keyless Entry with All-Secure, Remote Start System, Second-Row In-Floor Storage Bins, Security Alarm, Sentry Key® Theft Deterrent System, SiriusXM Travel Link™/1Yr Travel Link Subscription, Speed Control, Spray in Bedliner, Steering Wheel Mounted Audio Controls, Sun Visors with Illuminated Vanity Mirrors, Tilt Steering Column, Tinted Glass Windows, Tinted Windshield Glass, Tip Start, Tow Hooks, Trailer Tow with 4-Pin Connector Wiring, Traveler / Mini Trip Computer, Uconnect® 8.4AN AM/FM/BT/ACCESS/NAV, Universal Garage Door Opener, Under Hood Lamp, Variable Intermittent Windshield Wipers and Ventilated Front Seats, I added the 8-Spd Auto 8HP70 Trans (Buy), 3.92 Rear Axle Ratio, Convenience Group, Canyon Brown/Lt. Frost Beige, Black Gold Pearl Coat with 2-tone White Gold accents, Anti-Spin Differential Rear Axle, Power Sunroof, Class IV Receiver Hitch, Trailer Brake Control, Protection Group, Rear Window Defroster, Air Suspension, 4-Corner and RamBox Cargo Management System.

Explorer Rob 05-09-2013 01:11 AM

Here are my dislikes and issues in no particular order.
1) The first thing I want to mention is the guage package that only comes with the Longhorn. Ram uses silver lettering on a gold background. I find it very difficult to quickly read my speed in the daytime. At night it is very legible though. At night it is lit up with white letters on black. As a result I keep my EVIC on the speed setting.
2) Another issue I have again is with the Longhorn only and may not even be an issue. I'll know if it is once our temperatures exceed 110F. The issue is the wood top of the steering wheel. The dark wood they chose for my steering wheel looks beautiful but I am concerned that it may be too hot to hold once it gets really hot outside. Being wood though it may not. Another issue with the steering wheel is it is sanded so smoothly that it is hard to get a grip on it unlike the leather on the other 2/3 of the wheel.
3) Another issue I have but I am not really concerned with is my current average mileage on the EVIC is 13.1 MPG. It had 22 miles on it when I picked it up. I now have 125 miles on it. All but 20 miles I put on it were city. The other 20 miles were freeway. The few times I did have it on the freeway with the cuise control set my EVIC was showing 20-24 MPG on steady cruising. I have no doubt that the mileage will improve as I get more mileage on it.
4) The next issue is with the tire pressure monitor sensors. They are reading about 5 PSI too high. When I drove it home it seemed to ride pretty hard. When I checked the tires in the EVIC it showed all tires were set to 47 PSI. The door sticker says set to them to 39 PSI. I lowered all 4 tires to 39 PSI per my electronic hand held gauge that I have been using for a few years. I've never had an issue with my gauge before but I won't rule out the possibility of it being bad. When I checked the EVIC after lowering the tires to 39 on my gauge, the EVIC still showed 44 PSI. This was cold pressure after sitting in my garage all evening. The strange thing though is yesterday morning when I was getting ready to take my Ram up to the dealer to have them fix my front bumper that has a golf ball size dent and chip from delivery the tires showed 40-41 PSI. I asked the Assistant Service Manager to compare the EVIC reading to their gauge when I brought it in to have them fix my bumper they scratched up during delivery. The Assistang Service Maganager wrote up the ticket "Check TPMS, light on". I told her the light wasn't on, it was reading too high. She said that's OK, that tells them to check the system. When I picked up my Ram, it had on the ticket "TPMS system checked, no lights, no errors, no problems found". I don't understand why they can't read correctly. I have a 2010 Chevy 2500 Express work van with TPMS and they are within 1 PSI on my gauge. Same goes for my mother's 2013 Dodge Journey.

Explorer Rob 05-09-2013 01:11 AM

5) The next issue is with the 8.4AN radio and my frustration trying to get it to correctly show all of my songs I have encoded on my SD card. Some songs from some albums will be listed as "unknown artist" with no details except for the thumbnail. I've already found that the system doesn't seem to like album or artists who's name begins with ".". I think I have cleared those out but out of the approximately 4000 songs on my SD card, 390 of them are listed with no details thereby making them unsearchable except by going to "Unknown Artist". The frustrating thing is I've looked at the details for several of them and the songs in question seem to match the rest of the songs in the album. What makes it worse is I can format the SD card and reload all of the songs back on and have some of the songs that had problems, show up correctly now whereas a new set of songs won't have details. Haven't figured out why yet.
6) Another issue is also with the 8.4AN radio. It has to do with the search feature. When searching for an album, and then hitting the "ABC" key to jump to a given letter, after the letter "B", it will not jump far enough. For example, when I press "C" it jumps to the 63rd album that starts with "B". It gets further off the further down the alphabet I go. It makes it difficult trying to quickly jump to a known album or artist, not knowing exactly where you'll wind up.
7) The last issue with the radio is the blue tooth streaming. It streams OK from my Motorola Droid Razr Maxx HD, but the radio display continues to show the last song I was playing on my SD card. I don't expect it to show the song from my phone when I am streaming Pandora (which is what I almost always stream) but I would rather it not show the song title for the last song I played on my SD card across the Media screen or on my EVIC. Maybe just say something like "Bluetooth Streaming". A couple other minor issues with the streaming is it doesn't automatically connect to my phone for Meda streaming. It will connect for phone mode but I have to start the media on my phone. I don't have the issue when I use my phone with other streaming devices. Also, once I do get streaming started my radio insists that I always want to stream my phone media from Google Player. I don't want to stream the music from my phone, that is what I want the SD card for. I want to stream Pandora. Maybe once I get the Pandora App back on my radio, it will eliminate this issue.
8) Probably the last thing I can think of that is a dislike is the same issue I ran into the last time I had a truck. Every family member and friend wants me to haul something for them.
To me these are minor issues and I wouldn't trade my Longhorn in for anything. I'm just expecting perfection, even if not right away.

Explorer Rob 05-09-2013 01:11 AM

Here are my likes and observations, again in no particular order.
1) First, the 8-speed automatic is well worth waiting for! It is the best transmisison I have ever had in a vehicle after 42 years of driving. It seems to always be in the right gear no matter what the speed. It takes very little effort on the gas pedal to get instant acceleration. The shifting if very smooth. When lightly accelerating, you can't feel the shifts. The only way to tell is by watching the tach or listening to the sound of the engine. It happens so quickly. The rotary shift knob is a non-issue. My 2500 Chevy work van and my outgoing Ford Explorer had column shifters and I never rested my hand on them. I guess I am used to finding other places to place my right hand. My Wife's Hyundai Sonata has a console shifter and often times I will rest my hand on it but I imagine if it weren't there I would find someplace else to put my hand. Litterally, once I shift into Drive on the Ram I totally forget what kind of shifter it has. I still have the ability to lock out the higher gears using the buttons on the steering wheel. I haven't had a need for it yet while driving around town though, maybe this weekend when I head up to the mountains for my Ram's first road trip.
2) Second, the Hemi is just plain awesome! Its acceleration is so misleading and smooth that I had to set the Speed Nannie on my radio to warn me when I am 5 MPH over the speed limit. It doesn't matter what speed I am starting from, it has outstanding acceleration. The only two Ram's I have driven prior were 6-speeds. I drove a Big Horn with a 3.55 axle and a Laramie with a 3.92. Mine has the 3.92 with the 8-speed. The others don't compare to the enjoyment I get from mine. The Big Horn with the 3.55 was uninspiring and felt sluggish off the line but the Laramie with the 3.92 and the 6-speed was OK. Now having driven the 8-speed I would never consider getting the 6-speed.
3) The paint quality to me is acceptable. I did find a couple of needle size dimples in the clear coat but they aren't worth me having them do anything about them. If I didn't go over it as detailed as I did, I wouldn't have ever noticed them.

Explorer Rob 05-09-2013 01:12 AM

4) The factory spray in bed-liner looks acceptable to me and looks like it will hold up well. There are two places that I am concerned with though. There are two bumps that look like bubbles about 2" long on the left side of the bed floor. I think they line up with the mounting bolts. They aren't on the right side though. If I press down on them, they do go down a bit. I'm concerned that they may tear but they are below the metal ridges so I don't think anything will hit them.
5) As far as the interior goes the Longhorn leather is the best I've ever sat in in a vehicle. One of the Rams I test drove prior was a Laramie. The leather in that reminded me more of the leather in my Mother's Monte Carlo (hard and slippery). The Longhorn leather is more like a high end leather jacket, soft and grippy.
6) At first I was undecided if I would like the Longhorn's floor mats. On one hand they will be very functional since they are mostly rubber and easy to clean. However, I like the look of the full carpeted floor mats. These have a brown burber type carpet at the four corners, the rest is brown rubber. They'll be easier to keep clean, but that usually isn't an issue here in the desert.
7) I love all of the extra electronics that either came standard or that I ordered optionally. I know it's said that the more electronics the more problems. I am willing to put up with the minor inconveniences of what is surely to happen over the years. The radio sounds outstanding. I am happy enough with it that I have no intentions of ever attempting to change anything on it even if I could. The sound is crystal clear with plenty of bass and clear highs. It sounds even better on the HD Radio mode. I just received my printed owner's manual & U-Connect manual. Together they have more than 1000 pages of instruction. I handed it to my wife and asked her to read them so she can help navigate us across the country this summer. Good thing I duck quickly.

Explorer Rob 05-09-2013 01:12 AM

8) With regards to the air-suspension, I am sold. I like that when it's at the normal ride height it rides better than just about any car I've ever been in. It is an added benefit that I can get 2 more inches of ride height when I take it offroad. It should make oil changes easier too. The entry/exit mode comes in handy when loading the ram boxes and when I installed my BakFlip F1. My Wife likes that she doesn't have to step up as high as she did to get into my lifted Explorer. If I could just get her to keep from opening the door until it settles into the entry mode that would be better. I try and remember to push the entry mode as I am pulling into my destination, but being so new, i usually forget until I am already parked. I do wish I could keep it in any height at any speed, but don't want a tuner for that option. I love the looks of a Gen 4 Ram with 6" lift and 35" tires but to do that my Ram would have to park in the driveway which will not happen. In Offroad 2 mode, I can just get into the garage without scraping off my shark fin antennae.
9) Another thing I kept seeing was that if the bumpers weren't chrome, then they were plastic. Maybe that's the case on the Express and Sport models but not on my Longhorn. My bumpers are painted gold and they are definately steel.
10) I am still on my 1st tank of gas but down to 1/4 tank. I have the 32 gallon tank an at least through this first tank I never noticed the bump some people have been complaining about. I'll keep watching for it for the next few tanks, but if I don't notice it by then, I'll probably forget it was ever an issue for some.

When I ordered my Ram I ordered everything exactly as I wanted. I wouldn't change a thing about what I ordered. The only thing that I wished was that the Limited were available at the time of my order since I like the monocolor and premium black leather interior more. Since the Black Gold isn't an option on the Express and Sport models I doubt if the Limited will be available in Black Gold either. I did get the Lifetime Maximum care warranty with a $100 deductable since I intend on keeping my Ram for a very long time and am prepared for the problems that are likely to show up over the years.

http://i1258.photobucket.com/albums/.../130428004.jpg

http://i1258.photobucket.com/albums/.../130426002.jpg

plumcrazy73 05-09-2013 08:27 AM

the issue with the songs, could have to do with the song tags attached to them and not the radio. just a thought.

Powerwagon 46 05-09-2013 09:05 AM

Wow. That is a really pretty truck, especially in the bright sunshine. I have a Longhorn on order in Copperhead Pearl. If it looks close to yours I will be really happy.

I ordered the WTW side step. Looking at yours I like the standard step bar. I hope I didn't make a mistake.

firemarshallvin 05-09-2013 11:16 AM

Great write-up Rob. Now I'm really excited about mine coming in, can't wait!

buckmaster 05-09-2013 11:34 AM

Very useful critique. Now I know what to expect when (hopefully) I pick mine up from dealer next week. Awesome looking truck. Any pointers on pillar tape removal?


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